From its very inception, Social Security was designed to provide a safety net for retirement and in case of disabling injury or illness prior to retirement age. For those who find themselves in the unenviable position of being unable to continue working due to disability, the Social Security disability system can be invaluable.
Unfortunately for most people who need to claim Social Security disability benefits, getting an approval for a disability claim can take a long time. The Social Security Administration (SSA) is faced with millions of new claims every year, and many claimants wait three to six months before their claim even crosses the desk of an adjudicator.
Even when your disability claim does reach a representative of the SSA, the chances of it being initially accepted are only around 30% (though your odds improve if you are represented by a Social Security disability lawyer). Most claimants have to go through a drawn out, multiple step appeals process before their claims are ultimately accepted.
If you’re facing a serious, life threatening disease such as Glioblastoma Multiforme, you don’t have time to wait months or years for the SSA to approve your disability claim.
Thus, in 2008, the SSA began to look at how they could speed up the claims process for people who have conditions that should automatically qualify them for Social Security disability benefits. The SSA currently recognizes 88 distinct medical conditions which, by virtue of their fatal or obviously debilitating nature, qualify claimants for Social Security disability benefits without any need for further questioning or adjudicating.
Many of these conditions, known as Compassionate Allowances, are rare different types of cancers or debilitating progressive neurological conditions. Glioblastoma Multiforme is one of the conditions that qualify for a compassionate allowance.
Glioblastoma Multiforme – Condition and Symptoms
Glioblastoma Multiforme is a type of tumor which affects the central nervous system. It is fast growing and able to affect both the brain and spinal chord. It is often difficult to diagnose in its early stages because the diseased cells’ appearance is close to that of normal, healthy cells.
Glioblastoma multiforme is more malignant than any of the other primary types of brain tumors. It causes brain cells to lose their control mechanisms which in turn causes them to divide and grow. The malignant cells spread quickly throughout the brain and spinal chord.
Glioblastoma typically strikes adults between 45 and 70 years old. Early symptoms include vomiting, frequent headaches, mood changes, personality changes, appetite loss, cognitive changes (loss of thinking, learning, and memory capacity), and seizures.
Glioblastoma Multiforme is generally treated with chemotherapy, radiation and surgery. Usually, some combination will be attempted. However, with the aggressiveness of this rare form of cancer and the fact that it does not respond well to any treatment currently available, the survivability rate for those with Glioblastoma multiforme is not high. Most who suffer from it die within three years of the onset.
Filing for Social Security Disability Benefits with Glioblastoma Multiforme
Fortunately, Glioblastoma Multiforme qualifies for a compassionate allowance, so qualifying for Social Security disability benefits is usually not difficult. The most important thing is to make sure that all of the paperwork is filled out and filed correctly and that complete medical documentation which corroborates the diagnosis of Glioblastoma Multiforme accompanies the file.
If you are filing for Social Security disability benefits as a result of Glioblastoma Multiforme, make sure that your medical file includes a complete report of the biopsy and any other tests which were used to make the diagnosis.
Many claimants find it helpful to have a Social Security disability attorney review their case for them. Because getting the claim right can make the difference between a compassionate allowance and a short wait to start collecting Social Security disability benefits and the prospect of facing the appeals process, most people find it worthwhile to have an expert handle filing the claim.
Your Glioblastoma Multiforme Social Security Disability Case
There’s no question you will ultimately qualify for Social Security disability benefits. The only question, really, is whether an error will hold the process up longer than necessary. If an error does hold up the process, your benefits could be delayed for several months. If you’re suffering from Glioblastoma Multiforme, time is at a premium for you, and waiting around for the SSA to figure out whether you should qualify for disability benefits doesn’t fit on your agenda.
That’s why it’s important to make sure your claim is filed correctly in order to make sure that you are flagged for a compassionate allowance. A Social Security disability attorney who is knowledgeable about the process will be able to ensure that you have all of the correct documentation on file.